How to measure the level of lactate via the AFL® method

If you want a precise indicator of how the uterus works, it is essential to get an exact measurement of the level of lactate in the amniotic fluid. Lactic acid is a bi-product of hard work in the uterus, and its levels are an indicator of the magnitude of the work in the uterus.

The first and only method doing this is the AFL method.

By an objective measurement of the lactate level, the health care professionals will be given a safe and more tailor made instrument to support your individual birth giving style. The AFL-method is developed by obstetricians, midwives and engineers. It is performed with minimal interference and no pain for the birth giving mother.

The method is as follows:

  1. The midwife collects the amniotic fluid which drips from the women during birth.
  2. This fluid is inserted into a probe.
  3. The probe is put in an AFL apparatus, that translates the chemical composition of the amniotic fluid into electric impulses.
  4. Within 15 seconds the results are ready.

With this new method midwives and doctors can make safer decisions, and help tailor make your delivery to your specific needs. At a higher AFL value, a higher risk has been shown of the woman bleeding or tears in the perinatal area, and also for asphyxia of the baby. This woman’s uterus will respond badly to synthetic oxytocin. She might need a rest, for the uterus to recuperate. Otherwise an acute c-section might be a solution.

With a lower AFL value, the women will respond better to synthetic oxytocin, and this should be the preferred treatment leading to a normal vaginal birth.